Pebble's $10m smart watch gets release date
By Nicole Kobie in Las Vegas
Posted on 9 Jan 2013 at 18:03
The Pebble smart watch is ready to ship, after the Kickstarter project was delayed for almost four months.
Pebble is a $150 smart watch that connects to an Android handset or iPhone over Bluetooth to deliver texts, emails, call notifications and other information.
It was built following a massively successful fundraising campaign on crowdfunding site Kickstarter, raising more than $10 million from 65,000 people despite only asking for $100,000.
CEO Eric Migicovsky announced the Pebble watch at CES 2013, saying it was not only the company's first press conference, but the first he's ever attended too.
"To us, a smart watch is a connected device, which means it talks to your smartphone, and it's customisable, which means it can run different apps, and it’s sleek," he explained.
The Pebble features a 1.6in, 144 x 168 e-paper display - Migicovsky stressed it's not E Ink, but an LCD that can play 30fps animations. The display is black and white and "perfectly readable outdoors under direct sunlight," he said.
Pebble has a battery life of seven days, as the e-paper display doesn't require much power. Because the watch is connected to a smartphone all the time, it drains the handset's battery by as much as 5-10% a day, Migicovsky admitted.
The smart watch runs a proprietary Pebble OS on top of FreeRT OS. It comes with apps built-in to display different watch faces, and Migicovsky showed off a standard analogue design, a fuzzy time that shows vague text such as "ten to ten", and another that shows the time in binary.
Aside from showing the time, the system pushes notifications from a smartphone app to the watch. That includes text messages, iMessages, and emails, with the text displaying directly on the watch. "It allows you to make a time management decision – is this email something I need to respond to right now, or deal with a little bit later?"
Pebble supports notifications from web services, such as Facebook and If This Then That. That latter site allows users to send automated messages. Migicovsky set one up a warning if it was set to snow in Las Vegas, but other IFTTT services include Instagram, LinkedIn and Evernote.
Calls can be directed to the watch, which vibrates when a call is incoming. A user can see who's calling and push the call to voicemail directly from the watch.
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It's awesome but why didn't this product already exist?
By Mark_Thompson on 9 Jan 2013
So now you have one more device to worry about charging?
Although a necessary evil, my cellphone bothers me enough. The last thing I need now is a watch to add more sounds.
PS. WUPHF.com anyone?
By kingjulian on 10 Jan 2013
A friend has already has a watch with built in mobile. I think he used it for about a week before giving up and going back to his phone.
Another pointless gadget that will appeal to some then probably sink without trace after the initial fanfare.
By njm1404 on 10 Jan 2013
Not more people commenting on and article they obviously haven't read.
Re sink without trace: $100k was sought, $10m was given by 65,000 people. I think it's popular!
Re pointless: Your comments are a combination of "I've no use for it so no nobody else does" and not having read the article so you've no idea what you're slating.
By Mark_Thompson on 10 Jan 2013
next up a pair of vibrating socks that alert you to the message on your watch alerting you to a message on your mobile
By simontompkins on 10 Jan 2013
I like it
It's a neat idea. The fact that you can decide what kind of watch face you want is neat. Your phone can saty in your pocket most of the time and less of a social gaff to glance at your watch rather than whip a smartphone out of your pocket to read a message. But charging the battery each day.... ?? Maybe no for the time being.
By WilliamW on 12 Jan 2013
The article stated 7 days battery life.
By Mark_Thompson on 12 Jan 2013
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